Ribbon Cutting Celebration Friday Oct. 21 for $28.3 million Western International High School renovation in Southwest Detroit

Students, community members will celebrate during a special assembly Oct. 21 at 12 noon 

Detroit—Students, parents, principals, staff and community members of Western International High School in Southwest Detroit will celebrate the completion of their newly renovated school, located at 1500 Scotten Avenue, during a special ribbon cutting assembly Oct. 21 at 12 noon.

The $28.3 million facility renovation includes a new athletic complex addition with a swimming pool, new gymnasium, training and fitness classroom spaces and a new building entrance for after-hours use by both students and the community.

Within the existing high school, the non-functioning pool was filled in and the space reconfigured for use as a visual and performing arts wing that includes a state-of-the-art black box theater, two dance studios, language laboratories, and art classrooms. The space also includes a cultural center to serve as a community marketplace.  A new security entrance was added to incorporate new security technologies, enhance student safety and foster greater connection between the community and administrative offices.

The design build team is Colasanti / DCI, a 100 percent Detroit-headquartered joint venture. The architect is NSA Architects, Engineers and Planners.

Construction at Western was completed in just over one year.

Western is one of nine new and renovated schools opened to students last month in the largest grand opening of facilities in one of the city’s largest construction projects. The schools are part of the $500.5 million construction project to build and renovate the district’s facilities with voter-approved Proposal S dollars.

Western is the district’s third largest school, enrolling 1,250 students. Combined with new Amelia Earhart Elementary Middle School, more than 2,000 students attend these two schools along Scotten Avenue. Both schools opened this fall with combined $50.5 million in new construction and renovations for the Southwest Detroit community.

Extensive renovations were also done at Marcus Garvey Academy, Beckham Academy, Bunche Elementary Middle School, Denby High School and Henry Ford High School. Martin Luther King Jr. Senior High School, Samuel Gompers Elementary Middle School and Amelia Earhart Elementary Middle School are brand new facilities built from the ground up in just over one year.

Detroit voters approved Proposal S in November 2009 which enabled the district to access $500.5 million for school capital improvement projects. DPS received the sixth largest allocation in the nation.

The improvement program also includes technology upgrades and security initiatives being funded with Proposal S dollars. To comply with federal guidelines, all bond dollars must be spent within three years and all projects must be completed by September 2012.

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